Facebook exposes data of 540 million users on Amazon servers

The social media app has another data breach with user data able to be accessed on Amazon cloud servers.

Facebook and Mark Zuckerberg after Facebook data breach with Amazon servers Source: Bloomberg

Facebook share price is down 1% after another data breach at the company. This news comes just weeks after another problem with user password exposure. There have been discoveries that the data of hundreds of millions of users on Amazon servers were displayed publicly without their knowledge.

How did Facebook users’ data become exposed?

The data breach was noted when UpGuard, a cyber security firm, noted that two servers contained customers' information. The first server had data from users of Cultura Colectiva, a Spanish-language celebrity news web site.

The second server stored information from a user database of the At the Pool game on the social media app. That server held visitors’ usernames and passwords. UpGuard explained that the exposed passwords could have easily been misused.

‘The passwords are presumably for the 'At the Pool' app rather than for the user's Facebook account, but would put users at risk who have reused the same password across accounts,’ said UpGuard.

Chris Vickery, director of cyber risk research for UpGuard, said that the public is largely unaware of the security risks Facebook exposes customers to with its data collection.

‘The public doesn’t realize yet that these high-level systems administrators and developers, the people that are custodians of this data, they are being either risky or lazy or cutting corners. Not enough care is being put into the security side of big data,’ said Vickery.

Facebook’s response to Amazon server data breach

Facebook has vowed to address this current information exposure. This issue comes a year after the Cambridge Analytica scandal in which visitors' data were exposed without their knowledge. The corporation said that they have deleted the compromised databases on the Amazon servers.

‘Facebook's policies prohibit storing Facebook information in a public database. Once alerted to the issue, we worked with Amazon to take down the databases. We are committed to working with the developers on our platform to protect people's data,’ said a Facebook spokesperson.


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